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Procurement Market Intelligence Report

Mainframe Computers
Sourcing Guide & Market Trends

Comprehensive intelligence for making smart purchasing decisions

Learn about actual and potential costs

How much should I pay for Mainframe Computers?

What is the average price of Mainframe Computers?

This procurement report includes pricing information to help you purchase Mainframe Computers. Our analysts provide a benchmark price and a price range based on key pricing factors to help you understand what you should be paying for this specific product or service. To see the average price for this and hundreds of other products and services, subscribe to ProcurementIQ.

Has the price of Mainframe Computers been rising or falling?

Analysts look at market data from the previous three years to determine an overall price trend. You can use the recent price trends to help you understand price volatility and plan your budget.

I’m not ready to purchase Mainframe Computers yet. Will I pay more if I wait too long?

We forecast the next three years of price movements by looking at factors likely to affect the market's supply chain, such as inputs, demand and competition. You can then use the price forecast to figure out the best time to purchase.

What other costs are associated with purchasing Mainframe Computers?

Our analysts calculate the total cost of ownership and assign a level of low, moderate or high, depending on things like customization, integration and installation. Use this information to budget for Mainframe Computers with a reduced risk of unexpected costs.

See how we display average pricing information, trends and market data.

Find the vendor to meet your needs

Where can I purchase ?

IBM has a monopoly in the mainframe computer market. The product's exorbitant R&D costs create extremely high barriers to entry, which make it difficult for other suppliers to operate and compete in the market. In addition, IBM has held a dominant market share for decades, thus creating a near-impenetrable brand... Subscribe to learn more.

Questions to ask potential suppliers

How can I gain leverage during negotiations?

Experience and Expertise

How long have you provided these products to your longest-tenured client?

What qualifications does your staff have and what measures do you take to keep those qualifications up to date?

What industry do you most commonly supply this product for?

To what extent will ordering multiple products from your firm allow me to save on costs?

What is your repeat business rate for businesses in my industry and how does that compare to your overall rates?

Supply Chain Risk

Over the past three years, what percentage of your revenue has been dedicated to raw input materials? How has that changed?

Has the availability of raw materials tightened due to the coronavirus outbreak?

Over the past three years, what percentage of your revenue has been dedicated to labor?

How have fluctuations in input prices affected the prices of your products during the past three years?

How do you mitigate sudden price increases in raw materials?

When input prices rise, how much of the cost is absorbed by you and how much is passed onto buyers?

How, if at all, has your supply chain been affected by import tariffs levied in 2018?


How do you manage regulatory change? Do you have regulation advisers or methods to track regulation?

How have changing regulations influenced your pricing now and how will the changes affect prices over the life our proposed agreement?

What ongoing training procedures do you provide for your staff?

Have you ever been found to be noncompliant with regulatory frameworks?

Amid widespread health concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic, what contingency plans are in place to mitigate risk to your clients and employees? Do you offer clients any flexible exceptions, such as contract suspensions?


How many mainframes of this model have ever failed for any reason?

How long has downtime lasted?

How has downtime affected a user's business?

How do you remedy a mainframe’s failure?

What measures do you take to prevent failures?


On what operating systems does your mainframe run?

To what extent can your mainframe be partitioned?

Does the native operating system provide features a third-party system would not?

Do you offer usage-based pricing?

Do you offer discounts on software with the purchase of a mainframe?

Additional Hardware

Can additional servers be integrated into your mainframe?

What hardware redundancies do you offer?

What other hardware can be integrated into the mainframe?

Do you offer price discounts on related hardware with the purchase of a mainframe?

Customer Support

How do you support mainframe installation and integration?

What customer support services are availability?

How quickly can you respond to service requests?

Do mainframe service requests get prioritized over other types of service requests?


What does your mainframe offer that linked servers cannot?

How does your company compete with the server market?

What level of competition do you expect from servers over the next three years?

How has your mainframe line been affected by the increasing capabilities of servers?

Supply Chain Management

During the past three years, what percentage of your revenue has been dedicated to raw input materials? How has that changed?

How have fluctuations in input prices affected the prices of your product during the past three years?

Do you source from multiple suppliers or a single supplier? How does this affect costs?

How do you measure and monitor operational efficiency?

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Key elements for every RFP

What should my RFP include?

Project Budget

Buyers should specify the total budget for their mainframe computer purchase.

Buyers should include details about spending expectations and limitations on any additional costs.

Buyers should request detailed information about the delivery methods and installation costs.

Selection Criteria

Buyers should look for providers that can offer mainframe computers that meet the specifications outlined in the RFP.

Buyers should give preference to providers that can meet the budget requirements in the RFP.

Buyers should look for providers that have a reputation for reliable and effective products.

For a detailed list of key selection criteria, buyers should reference the Buying-Decision Scorecard section of this report.

Project Schedule

Buyers should include the date proposals are due.

Buyers should indicate the date by which the mainframe computer needs to be installed.

Buyers should indicate how they want the mainframe computer delivered or installed.

Evaluate major factors to mitigate risk

How risky is the supply chain?

Supply chain risk in the mainframe computer market is medium, although this risk rarely affects buyers. The supply chain is primarily composed of high-tech manufacturers, which typically have moderate risk levels due to the high competition in their industries and low profit margins. However, IBM is the only mainframe computer... Subscribe to learn more.